Professor of Comparative Literature
He has also taught as a visiting professor at the Free University Berlin and at the University of Toulouse, and has been the director of Hampshire's semester-long study abroad program. He has published widely on nineteenth- and twentieth-century European literature; on biography and literary portraiture; on testimony, Holocaust literature, and Berlin Jewish history; and on debates about education. His book Closed Encounters: Literary Politics and Public Culture was published by the University of Minnesota Press.
Some of his most recent publications are "Beckett in Time of Crisis," "Totem and Taboo: The Perverse Writings of Ka-Tzetnik 135633," "The Lure of the Archive: The Atlas Projects of Walid Raad," "Migrant Visions: The Scheunenviertel and Boyle Heights, Los Angeles," “Twemlow’s Abyss,” "Narrative Tensions: The Eyewitness and the Archive,” "Falling Under an Evil Influence," "The Death and Discontents of Theory," and "Sociable Robots und das Posthumane." He is currently working on a study of the archive in contemporary thought and art.
His teaching interests include 19th- and 20th-century comparative literature (German, French, British), critical theory, Holocaust Studies, modernism, Jewish Studies, psychoanalysis, and philosophy.
Autobiography is not one literary genre among others--autobiographical writing cuts across all distinctions of genre. In the last 30 years, there has been a remarkable proliferation of life writing, and also expansion into new forms, such as on the internet and graphic novels. In this course we will read earlier forms of confession, autobiography, and memoir, and look at a wide range of recent writings, including testimony, memoirs of illness and recovery, and coming out narratives. We will also examine theories of the self, of identity, of consciousness, and of memory. Students will be expected to complete several analytical papers and to complete a final project that incorporates life writing.